Authored by multi-media artist Walt Cassidy (aka Waltpaper), New York: Club Kids proves to be a most comprehensive survey of the legendary antics of ’90s nightlife in NYC. Cassidy, a central figure in the subculture, saw firsthand the “artistic, fashion-conscious youth movement that crossed over into the public consciousness.” Though it includes rare photographs, this book is far more than an attempt at archiving an era that bubbled up from the underground; it also works to contextualize modern-day concepts that originated with the Club Kids: “reality television, self-branding, ‘influencers’ and the gender revolution.”
Respected biographer Meryle Secrest seeks to uncover a Cold War era conspiracy in her new book The Mysterious Affair at Olivetti: IBM, the CIA, and the Cold War Conspiracy to Shut Down Production of the World’s First Desktop Computer. The story revolves around the Olivetti company and family, best known for their typewriters, but also the brand behind the first personal computer—some 10 years before competitors like Apple and IBM. The book begins with Adriano (the son of founder Camillo Olivetti) dying on a train to Switzerland in 1960—suspicious considering he had previously worked to remove prime minister Benito Mussolini during WWII and had ties to spy networks. In her book, Secrest seeks to understand why Olivetti, being such a pioneering company in the world of tech, fell into obscurity and what really happened to Adriano and lead engineer Mario Tchou, who also died mysteriously a year later.
Cleo Le-Tan’s A Booklover’s Guide to New York is a thoughtfully selected collection of the city’s most charming book stores and libraries; as well as writers’ homes and favorite cafes, bars and restaurants; and well-known literary landmarks. With whimsical illustrations by beloved French artist Pierre Le-Tan (whose work graced countless New Yorker covers) and contributions from Tavi Gevinson, Marc Jacobs and Hamish Bowles, this guidebook can function as a real-life city guide or the entry-point to a daydream.
Part art book, part cookbook, part biography, Mirka & George: A Culinary Affair documents the life of Mirka and Georges Mora, Melbourne-based couple by way of Paris. Their apartment became a hub for the artistic community and their restaurants accommodated the overflow. This book—through photos, prints of their art, recipes and more—explains why the pair were so beloved and became icons of the Australian city.
Grand Union: Stories is prolific author Zadie Smith’s first collection of short stories. The respected and beloved author features her horror tales alongside historical fiction, reflective pieces on modernity, dystopian tales and more. While diverse in subject and genre, Smith’s writing is consistently rich, thoughtful and measured. There are 19 stories within, 11 of which are new and exclusive to this release.
An autobiography by punk icon Debbie Harry, Face It: A Memoir was crafted by Harry and music writer Sylvie Simmons. The fascinating tome is full of history, anecdotes and wild tales, but steers clear of being a full-on confessional—which perfectly suits Harry’s impeccably crafted Blondie persona. From her teenage years to moving to New York, meeting Chris Stein, her rise to fame and the creation of Blondie (the band and the character), nearly everything gets documented candidly alongside never-before-published photographs and artwork. Of course, there’s much more to Debbie Harry than Blondie, and plenty of that is explored within, too.
From award-winning journalist and author, Ta-Nehisi Coates, The Water Dancer is a stunning debut novel that has garnered universal praise for its dense, detail-rich prose and its moving tale about freedom. Though a work of surrealist fiction set in Virginia midway through the 19th century, the novel touches on themes that are still present today: the separation of families, the generational mistreatment of minorities, and the long-lasting impact of slavery in the USA.
With illustrations by Yayoi Kusama, this Penguin Classics hardcover release fuses the artist’s surreal style with the beloved tale. The book still suits kids, but proves that the tale transcends generations. Kusama’s take on the classic is perhaps the most creative and tantalizing yet.
Poet Ocean Vuong experiments with a brand new form in his meditative debut novel: the queer protagonist writes a cathartic yet tender letter to his Vietnamese mother, who will most likely never read it. Vuong’s visceral, unflinching use of language and metaphors hit like a tsunami, awakening numbed readers to the raw emotions and reckonings that make us human.
For those interested in understanding the inner-workings of Apollo 11’s mission to the moon, Phil Dollings and Christoper Riley’s Owners’ Manual affords insight previously seen by those working on the mission. From diagrams of rockets and command modules to details of suits worn by the crew and instructions on how to fly Apollo 11, there’s a bounty of information to peruse.
Beginning with some of civilization’s first sketches of objects in the sky and ending with some of our most high-definition satellite imagery, Sun and Moon is a thrilling catalog of important cosmic discoveries. Assembled by Mark Holborn and published by Phaidon, the book presents how we’ve used photography and cartography to explore space and time (and our ever-changing understanding of them) over thousands of years. With its publish coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, Sun and Moon gives new (and old) insight to curious readers.
With a keen eye and an artist’s touch, photographer Ethan James Green presents 55 tritone images in his debut monograph, Young New York. Published by Aperture Foundation and featuring an introduction from actress Hari Nef, the book does more than just document the diversity of the city, it celebrates the subjects found within. It will long be a reference for NYC at this moment, even as it transcends place and time.
From 1914 to 1925 Henry Ford and Thomas Edison went on annual road trips under the moniker “The Vagabonds”—they only ceased because their fame made the trips impossible to coordinate. The two traveled in order to survey the condition of America’s roads, in conjunction with the exponential growth of the automotive industry. The pair may have ventured with chefs and butlers, but this book—written by former investigate journalist Jeff Guinn—focuses on the more engaging details surrounding the duo’s relationship.
Penned by Man Booker-nominated author David Means, Instructions for a Funeral is a poetic and poignant collection of short stories. From a tale about fatherhood to one that follows two FBI agents on a stakeout, the stories offer lifelong lessons about compassion, love, addiction and more. Each unlike the last, these tales not only thrill, but also also provoke contemplation.
This beguiling book is made up of 15 stories by 15 writers, each exploring their relationship with their mother. What My Mother and I Don’t Talk About began as a moving personal essay by Michele Filgate, the book’s editor, and is unputdownable. Whether estranged or close, funny, tender, heartbreaking or mystifying, each of these mother/child dynamics is complex and entirely unique—yet readers will see themselves in a lot of the beautiful stories.
Written by respected English music journalist Jon Savage, This searing light, the sun and everything else: Joy Division: The Oral History is essential reading for music fans. Detailing the pioneering band’s existence (from 1976 to 1980), Savage draws from interviews with surviving band members—Peter Hook, Stephen Morris and Bernard Sumner—and contemporaries including their manager Rob Gretton, Factory Records co-founder Tony Wilson, art designer Peter Saville and others. This comprehensive and chronological account of the wildly influential post-punk band offers insights and stories never heard before.